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Back Pain Risk Factors

1. Muscle imbalances: nearly every ache, pain, or injury people suffer from today are mostly caused from muscular imbalances. Over 80% of people have muscle imbalances that go undetected. Over time, these muscle imbalances will cause numerous muscle and joint problems such as wear and tear on the joints, which eventually leads to arthritis, bulging disc or back spasms. An imbalanced muscle is a weak muscle.These weak muscles cannot stabilize the joint in its socket causing the joint to become misaligned and move at a slightly incorrect angle or rotation. When these faulty movements are repeated hundreds of times, the joints, tendons and muscles begin to degenerate.

2. Poor posture: Today’s diverse clientele with varied needs offers a unique challenge to health and fitness professionals. The one-size-fits-all approach to exercise programs is commonly unproductive and potentially dangerous. Many injuries and chronic back pain is a result of cumulative affects overtime.

Faulty postures and poor body mechanics will cause lower back pain and be at least partially attributed to these same faults. Improper movements will cause micro trauma to the joints

Cardio and Fat Loss

1. Cardio And Muscle Mass Loss. When it comes to cardio training, one thing you do need to be very careful about is the risk of muscle mass loss that comes with cardio training. If you do too much cardio training, you may not just be losing body fat, but the very tissue that helps you stay lean in the long run.

Steady state cardio training poses the greatest risk here, so avoid doing more than a few hours total per week.

2. Cardio And Calorie Adaptations. Next, you will also want to consider the calorie adaptations that are revealed when you do too much cardio training. Essentially, your body gets better at doing what it’s doing.

At first, you may burn “x” number of calories doing your cardio session but as time goes on, your body may start to burn fewer calories. This is why with any cardio you do, it is important you are progressing. Advancing means working at a higher level or adding more resistance as needed.

3. Cardio And Appetite. Another point to

Fix Bad Posture

To fix bad posture one of the number one methods is to just stand up straight. That’s right what your mom has been telling you is the best way overall. If you practice sitting and standing straight all day everyday for 30 days; I promise you will be shocked by the results. Your posture will dramatically improve.

To find your normal posture take your shoulders and bring them all the way up and back and then let them hang down. This is your normal posture and a great way to work on shoulder protraction.

Shoulder protraction is caused by a tight chest, tight lats, and a weak upper back (rhomboids). The way how to fix bad posture problem would be working to strengthen the rhomboids twice as much as the chest and lats.

Exercises such as barbell rows and reverse cable flies will greatly help you fix your weak rhomboids. Also spending a lot of time actively and statically stretching the chest and the lats to relieve some of the tightness.

A great chest stretch is done

Salsa Dancing for Fitness

Salsa’s popularity began to percolate beyond the borders of the Latin neighborhoods in the early Seventies, spreading into New York’s ballrooms and dance halls. Although somewhat formulized when practiced by those who favor profession competitions, salsa dancing in its most traditional form is typically spontaneous and extremely energetic. Dance movements alternate between the very slow and the furious, an embodiment of its lively musical style.

From a strictly athletic point of view, a night of dancing is a superb workout. It merges aerobic and anaerobic training, working your stamina and leg strength. Any kind of dancing is a great way to build the perfect body shape. The continual movements build up aerobic stamina while steadily burning calories over the course of the evening. This helps to strengthen and tone your legs at the same time you lose weight. But salsa excels at this.

Experts say that dancing salsa can burn up to 10 calories a minute, without the negative side effects of high impact exercises such as running. You can learn salsa dancing in the privacy of your home or in a studio, with or without a partner and it’s a fitness program that can easily

Simple Tricks Flattening Stomach

1. Fat Intake

How much fat is in your diet? The American Food Pyramid says that a healthy diet is one that “Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products, includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts, and is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars.

Following the food pyramid will help you find the fats you need in good foods like nuts and plant oils as opposed to potato chips and ice cream. You should be taking in less than 30% of your caloric intake from fat so check your labels when you’re purchasing packaged products. Many products now have the trans fats listed as well, so you can see which percentage of fat belongs to which group; saturated, non-saturated, trans, etc.

2. Carbohydrate Intake

Maybe your friends were on lo-carb diets and were amazed at the weight they lost. Maybe you tried one too? Carbohydrates are amazing in that each molecule attracts four water molecules to it and they hang out together inside your muscles. When you start decreasing the amount of carbohydrates you take in, you start to see

Spot Reduction

1. Muscle and fat are two distinct tissues. They have different properties and characteristics. It is not physiologically possible for one to be transformed into another. When performing these exercises, it is our skeletal muscle that is working, not the fat that may surround it.

2. When we perform any activity, we need energy for that movement. We get this energy from the foods that we consume. When we need energy for exercise, we do not choose which fuel will be used (determined by intensity). In addition, the energy used comes from the entire body not just the skeletal muscle that is moving. So the energy to perform those crunches may not necessarily be coming from your abdominal region!

3. Another key point to these “spot reduction” exercises is that they are anaerobic exercises. What does this mean? We have two energy systems that help us perform all activities. We have our aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. When performing these exercises effectively, the anaerobic system is the system of choice. Biochemically, carbohydrates are the primary fuel choice and fats cannot be used as an energy source.

4. IF you still are not convinced, here’s another

Get Bigger Butt by Exercising

1.) Change your walk. Stand and sit straight with your shoulders square and your head raised. Keep your abs contracted and your pelvis in a neutral position. This will not only make your butt more prominent, but it’ll also slim your torso a bit and make your chest look bigger.

2.) Butt Bridges. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your arms at your sides. Lift your butt toward the ceiling, then lower it. Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions.

3.) Squats. Stand erect with your feet about shoulder width apart and your arms extended in front of you. Bend your knees to a ninety degree angle with your back straight, then rise back up

4.) Lunges. Stand erect with your feet about shoulder width apart. Bend one leg behind you and the other leg in front of you.

5.) Do kick backs. Stand on one leg. With the leg that is free off the ground, kick it back until you see your butt squeeze into a bubble

6.)L eg lifts. Leg lifts (or raises) might sound like they’re focused on your legs, but really they’ll help work your abs.

Fit From Home

· Milk Jug Bent Over Row- A full gallon milk bottle weighs about 8 pounds. Fill it to make it the weight you desire. Hold in one hand (or you can use 2 containers, one in each hand). Bend at the waist to about 90 degrees and slightly bend the knees. Let arms hang straight down. Pull your elbow(s) up, pulling the jug towards your chest, as if you were starting a lawn mower. This is a great back and bicep exercise! *I suggest using containers with a screw on cap rather than the kind that snap on. Don’t ask me how I discovered this!

· Dog Food Squats- Grab a bag of dog food. Hug it close to you. Keeping your back as straight as possible (think “chest up”), bend the knees to about 90 degrees and stand back up. You are working quads (front of thigh), hamstrings (back of thigh), and glutes (butt), as well as abdominals! *Beware of dog!

· Kid Press- Really! If you have a young child, lie on your back while you are holding them on your chest. Press them up until your arms are straight and still over chest.

Booty Shaping Workouts

Squats: Squats are the most popular exercise to tone up muscles. Use your own body weight for resistance training. Remember to keep your back straight while doing squats. This takes the pressure off your lower back and puts it on your buttocks were it is most needed. Other things to remember when doing squats are: distribute your weight evenly by keeping your feet flat on the floor and using your heels to push you up out of the squat. Don’t drop into a squat; use controlled movements so that your knees will not be put under a lot of extra pressure.

Stair Climbing: Instead of taking the elevator why not climb a few sets of stairs instead? Alternatively you can use a stair climber at the gym or in your home if you have one. The muscles in the backs of your legs and buttocks get an excellent workout when climbing stairs.

The Isometric Butt Squeeze: You can do this while watching T.V. Lie face down on the floor and squeeze your butt cheeks together for 30 seconds at a time. Alternatively, you can do this exercise while sitting in a chair or standing. Butt squeezes

Some Mistakes When Workout Program

Expectations too high

If you expect to become a Joe Jordan or a Naumi Chambell after a few weeks of exercises, you’ll get disappointed. The purpose with your physical workout is to make yourself feel better and give you a better and richer life, not to compare yourself with others, whoever they are.

The measurement stick should always be the fitness and shape you were in before you started the exercising, and every improvements you do, are with references to this. If you do that, your expectations to the results of your exercise and workouts will be realistic, and you’ll be amazed of how good you really can be.

Getting Exhausted

Especially in the start up phase of a training program, some people are exercising so hard that they simply get exhausted or burned out. If you start your training program exceeding your present capabilities, and if you have not been exercising since you were a kid – you probably won’t be able to jogg or workout for the next 14 days.

Your muschles will hurt so much and your legs will be so stiff after your mega exercise, that you have to

Correct Workout Music

Start the correct way: you need to know that the very first song on the set sets the pace and tone for the entire workout. Many people have a hard time starting a workout. When you begin with a song that actually motivates you means that the entire workout will actually be great. When you have the correct tempo, you pick it up as you continue.

Mix: it is essential that you use different tunes since this will deal with the monotony that one single piece of music can actually have. The best songs can be finny, nostalgic, uplifting, mid tempo, fast and so on as long as they are able to blend well. Humor keeps the whole workout interesting.

Personalize: if there is a song that you really associate with in a positive way, then you should include it. It could be a song that reminds of something really pleasant or a time that you were very happy.

Pop is good: according to different studies that have been conducted, it has been noted that women actually like to stick to beat as they work out. Pop music provides a great steady rhythm. This is the

Knock Years Off Your Age

Today we know that the key to keep body functions working optimally is to keep going, to maintain a regular and vigorous fitness regime throughout life.

A lifelong fitness plan that stresses bones, builds muscle strength and enhances endurance, coordination and flexibility, can slow, if not bypass, some effects we often associate with aging, and many chronic diseases can be avoided entirely.

For instance, physical conditioning has a profound preventive effect on lung function. Starting at age 30, the ability of our bodies to extract the oxygen we need from the air we breathe begins to slow at a rate of about 1 per cent a year. However, at any age, the conditioned person can use oxygen more efficiently than an untrained person. Thus, in spite of that annual 1-per cent decline, the trained person of 70 has the same ability to pull oxygen into the lungs as an untrained 30-year-old.

Another major benefit of exercise is that it may diminish one’s risk of adult-onset diabetes, the type also known as non-insulin-dependent diabetes that usually strikes after age 40. Exercise increases the number of insulin-binding sites in muscles, and since more glucose is then taken

Overcome Workout Plateaus

A plateau typically is the direct consequence of a fitness rut – when an exerciser performs the same workout over and over. The human body is very efficient and quickly adapts to work. Once the body practices the same activity repeatedly, it grows more proficient at performing those moves. So that means it requires less energy and therefore also burns less calories.

Instead of celebrating their body’s improved fitness capabilities, exercisers often abandon their workouts. And who can blame them? After all, they no longer are seeing the results they desire and become increasingly bored with their workouts. Plus, hitting a plateau not only can halt fitness gains, but it can even reverse previous successes. But, with just a few simple steps exercisers can easily break-through that brick wall and continue to reap all the rewards of regular physical activity.

Dodging the dreaded plateau is actually very easy. Variety is the key ingredient to continual fitness success. To avoid hitting a workout plateau, follow these recommendations.

To begin with, every workout routine should be changed about every 4-6 weeks. The modification doesn’t have to be dramatic. A totally new exercise is a possible option, but

Right Exercise Intensity

First we need to understand that the definition of moderate intensity can be completely different from one individual to another. For example, a well-trained athlete may be in the moderate zone when running 5 miles in 30 minutes. Yet, for a novice exerciser who is very overweight, moderate means walking one mile in 30 minutes.

Don’t let this confuse you. While the intensity level is very critical in the overall guideline, fortunately it’s also fairly easily identified. The ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine) defines moderate as an intensity of 40 percent to 60 percent VO2 maximum. But, since most of us don’t know how to determine our VO2 maximum, there are easier definitions to utilize.

You can base VO2 loosely on your maximum target heart rate zone. A VO2 maximum of 40-60% equates to about 50 to 70 percent of maximum heart rate (MHR). And determining your MHR and the corresponding percent zones is relatively simple. Below is an easy calculation for determining your specific MHR and what 50-70 percent of equates to.

Target Heart Rate Zone

Take 220 and subtract your age. This equals your MHR. (Example: For a 30 year old

Basic Abdominal Body Fitness

Probably the simplest, and most popular, abdominal exercise is the crunch. Lying on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat will get your crunch started. Some people like to place their fingertips to the sides of the head, just behind the ears, while others like to do crunches with their arms crossed over their chest. Either way, the next step is to push your lower back to the floor and hold that while you crunch your abdominal muscles to lift your shoulders a few inches off the floor.

To mix things up a bit, you could add an exercise ball to your crunch. You will want to sit on the exercise ball with your feet flat on the floor. Slowly let the ball roll as you lie back until your thighs and torso are parallel with the floor. Then you will contract your abs, raising your torso no more than 45 degrees. The exercise ball is a lot of fun and can really help keep you from getting too bored with your usual abdominal exercises.

Whichever abdominal exercises you determine to be the best route to six pack city, don’t overdo it and end

Improve Lean Muscle Mass Gain

1. Time Your Carbohydrate Intake. When it comes to adding carbohydrates to your diet plan, add them before and especially after your workout period. This is when your body is most likely to use those carbs. Eat them at other points in the day, and you may find you are putting on more body fat and less lean muscle as you are not maximizing your nutrient window.

Around 50% of your total carb intake for the day should come in the meal before your workout, your post-workout shake, as well as your post-workout meal.

2. Focus On Compound Movements. Next, when you do hit the gym, think compound movements. These are going to give you the best bang for your buck so to speak, allowing you to work multiple muscle groups at once.

These exercises include moves like…

  • squats,
  • deadlifts,
  • lunges,
  • bench press,
  • shoulder press,
  • bent over rows,
  • pull-ups, and
  • pull-downs.

Focus your time on these, adding isolation exercises to the mix only once these are completed. You will not build more lean muscle mass doing bicep curls all workout long.

3. Think Frequency, Not Volume. Finally, when planning your workout sessions, think frequency, not volume. While it is great

Overcoming Obstacles

Perspective. And also, according to him, there’s no mountain too high to climb. Tom would know. Paralyzed from the waist down since birth he’s now 33 and trains about three times a week. In fact, he tells me, he just couldn’t get along without exercise.

So in my quest for the last word on overcoming barriers in fitness, Tom sat down with me and together we came up with 3 basic principles that will help break-down fears and intimidations in reaching fitness goals.

(After all, if he can exercise on a regular basis, shouldn’t that be encouragement enough for anyone to give it a shot?)

Principle #1 Move into the Fear.

“Train you mind to believe no mountain is too high or any goal is too difficult to attain,” Tom tells me. Basically, it’s all about meeting your fears and facing them head-on.

In this principle, aim to recognize your fears, acknowledge them and then move through them. Ask yourself what is it that makes you uncomfortable? Have you let yourself get out of shape and are afraid you’ll never get back? Do you have an injury that’s caused you to be afraid

Ease Your Gym Fear

1. Book A Session With A Trainer. If not knowing how to use the equipment is what is stopping you, that is an easy fix. Just book a session with a trainer to help show you. They will help you learn the ropes, and before you know it, you will look like a pro.

One or two sessions with a trainer can make any beginner feel far more confident in going to the gym.

2. Wear Clothing You Feel Comfortable In. Next, be sure you wear clothing you are comfortable in. At the start, it is not about fashion. Instead, it is about function. Worry about how you look later. Right now, focus on comfort.

The more comfortable you are, the more confident you will be, and that is what most people will notice anyway.

3. Start Slow. It is important you start slow. The last thing you want to do when you first start at a gym is to try every piece of equipment and then find you cannot walk the next morning.

If you are learning a bunch of new exercises, try just doing two or three first. Get used to those and then

Spice Up Your Workouts

A simple definition of Interval Training is: short, high-intensity exercise periods alternated with periods of rest. These higher and lower intensity periods are repeated several times to form a complete workout . Here’s a basic example: walk for 5 minutes at 3.5 MPH, walk for 1 minute at 4.2 MPH and then repeat this sequence several times.

Most people spend their workout time only performing continuous training exercises. These are exercises where the intensity level is basically constant throughout. An example of this is walking at 3.5 MPH, at 0% incline for 30 minutes.

Continuous training is very effective and should not be eliminated from your weekly workouts. However, it’s recommended that you include both Interval Training and continuous training sessions as part of your fitness regimen.

Why should you include Interval Training? As previously mentioned, there are many benefits to this type of training and execution is relatively simple. Interval Training can help you improve cardiovascular fitness, increase speed, improve overall aerobic power, burn more calories, break-through a plateau, increase workout duration, reach new exercise levels, expand your workout options and increase your workout threshold – just to name a few.

Plus, this

Fitness For Energy and Vitality

One of the most important factors that I always stress to people is to think about their workouts in the long-term. For instance, my idea of working out is for life, not a thirty-day quick fix. I want to be able to move my body and stay strong my entire life and the best way to do that is to think of the long-term benefits of working out.

I am not trying to lose thirty pounds under any kind of time frame, I am not trying to push myself to the limit in every workout, I am simply focusing my energy into the movements that I perform each day and reach a rep goal – I have a rep goal for every workout.

If you are focused on losing weight and you want to lose say ten pounds in the next thirty days then this puts an enormous amount of pressure on you, you will feel stressed when it comes to your diet and your workout because you know if you get it wrong then you won’t reach your goal.

It is so much better to lose that weight over a longer period of time.